James Patterson's biggest series ever! Torn from their family and slammed into prison, a sister and brother try everything to save the world they love from a dangerous new regime.
JAMES PATTERSON is one of the best-known and biggest-selling writers of all time. He is the author of some of the most popular series of the past decade- the Women's Murder Club, the Alex Cross novels and Maximum Ride, and he has written many other number one bestsellers including romance novels and stand-alone thrillers. He lives in Florida with his wife and son. James is passionate about encouraging both adults and children alike to read. This has led to him forming a partnership with the National Literacy Trust, an independent, UK-based charity that changes lives through literacy.
Gr 5-9-Wisty and Whit Allgood have magical powers, but they don't know it. At least they don't know until they are arrested by the guards of the New Order, which has just come to power. Their parents have always been into herbs and plants and predictions; they don't send their kids to typical schools, and when the teens are allowed to take only one item each to jail with them, they send a drumstick and a book with no words that are visible to the naked eye. The kids start to get an inkling of what they can do when Wisty bursts into flames when she gets angry, and before long she is turning people into creatures and conjuring tornadoes, and lightning bolts shoot from her hands. The bulk of the book takes place when Whit and Wisty are locked up in a reformatory where they are bullied by the guards. The chapters are only one to three pages in length and alternate between the two main characters' points of view. The action doesn't really pick up until the last third of the book, when the siblings make their escape. Readers expecting something akin to Patterson's "Maximum Ride" series (Little, Brown) are bound to be disappointed, but the groundwork is set for subsequent volumes that might make wading through the first one worthwhile.-Jake Pettit, Thompson Valley High School, Loveland, CO Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
Patterson (the Maximum Ride books) and Charbonnet launch a new series about political and cultural oppression, which suffers from some questionable storytelling choices. Ordinary teenagers Whit and Wisty are taken from their house by representatives of the oppressive "New Order." Accused of being a wizard and a witch, they're thrown in a dank prison to await execution. While there they begin to master previously unknown powers and, thanks to some otherworldly help, they manage to escape and are united with the resistance movement. The authors rely on coincidence and plot holes-each teen is allowed to bring one possession into the otherwise barbaric jail, and thus end up with magical implements. The story is further undercut by frequent recapping and short chapters, alternately narrated by the siblings, which break up the narrative for no perceivable reason. There's some fun world-building, including a stream of thinly disguised pop culture references in Wisty and Whit's alternate world (from the books of Gary Blotter to the artist Margie O'Greeffe), but even these are inconsistent (their world also includes Red Bull and the adjective Dickensian) and come across as groaners. Ages 10-up. (Dec.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"A fast, exciting, fantasy adventure ... with wall to wall thrills and spills ... page-turning suspense, pace and invention, street smart irony and upbeat humour" Books for Keeps